Your Support is Essential
SMU is breathing new life into the health sciences by creating a generation of highly skilled and compassionate professionals ready to tackle 21st-century healthcare challenges. The University's reputation for personalized instruction, hands-on clinical training, and a diverse student body mean it's well-positioned to advance patient care and address health inequities. With your support, we can make an even bigger difference.
At Samuel Merritt University, students come first. Your support ensures their success. When you donate to the SMU Fund, you support the greatest needs of our students. From merit and need-based scholarships to food pantries at multiple campuses, and emergency funds available when the unexpected impacts our students and their education, the SMU Fund allows donations to support the needs of our students now. It is the most immediate way to make an impact and to keep our students on track for success.
Our highest funding priority is currently for student scholarships through the SMU Fund. More than 86% of all students at SMU receive some form of financial aid. With education costs on the rise, it is imperative that we continue to raise funds to attract the best and the brightest students in all programs within the University.
With a gift of $1,500 or more to the SMU Fund, you can create a scholarship in your name. This scholarship will be awarded to a student this academic year and support their education. For more information, Director of Annual Giving Jenna Ingalls.
I Want to Help. What Are My Options?
There are many ways to support SMU, below are some common options. We are always happy to work with you individually to find the right fit for you and your family.
Join Our Circle of Friends!
Donors who make an annual gift of $1500 or more to Samuel Merritt University are invited to join the President’s Circle. Members of the President’s Circle receive special event invitations, exclusive SMU swag, and are recognized throughout the year for their philanthropic commitment to the university.
Nursing Dean’s Circle
Donors who make an annual gift of $500 or more to the College of Nursing are invited to join the Dean’s Circle. Members of the Dean’s Circle receive special event invitations, exclusive SMU swag, and are recognized throughout the year for their philanthropic commitment to the university.
Podiatry Dean’s Circle
Donors who make an annual gift of $500 or more to the California School of Podiatric Medicine are invited to join the Dean’s Circle. Members of the Dean’s Circle receive special event invitations, exclusive SMU swag, and are recognized throughout the year for their philanthropic commitment to the university.
Memorial and honorary gifts have been an important part of the history and tradition of SMU. From gifts such as the Hall Nursing Award, given in 1971 to honor the fine nursing care at Merritt Hospital, and named in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Chaffee E. Hall, to every small memorial gift made by one alumnus in the name of another, the University provides its alumni and friends with fitting ways to honor or memorialize family and friends.
Planned and Estate Gifts
Planned giving offers donors the opportunity to make a gift to the University in concert with their personal long-term financial and estate planning. Bequests enable donors to leave a lasting legacy when remembering SMU in their will or trust. Charitable Remainder Trusts help donors avoid capital gains taxes on appreciated property, increase income, and reduce income taxes. Donors may also leave a legacy by naming SMU in their life insurance policy, 401(k), IRA, or retirement plan.
Stocks and Securities
Donors may avoid capital gains tax on appreciated securities by donating to the University. Please contact us for more details.
Most endowment gifts bear the name of the donor or family and are restricted for scholarships. However, a donor may also endow a Faculty Chair in one of the programs offered at SMU. Endowment gifts are an especially rewarding way of giving. The funds are invested and the interest provides ongoing income for the purpose designated by the donor.